Shomi, the subscription OTT video service launched in November 2014 under the beta label by Canadian operators Rogers Communications and Shaw Communications, is gearing up to go wide and take the fight to Netflix.
Initially offered to Rogers and Shaw broadband or TV subs for C$8.99 per month (US$7.22), shomi will be available to all Canadians sometime this summer. Shomi’s keeping the national launch date a secret, but consumers who visit www.shomi4everyone.com and re-tweet the news about the coming, broader launch (or register an email address at www.shomi.com) will be alerted when the signups open up. New shomi subs are also in line for a free month of service.
Shomi, powered by Comcast-owned online publishing firm thePlatform, recently expanded support for the Apple TV and Google Chromecast streaming adapter, complementing earlier support for platforms such as Web browsers, iOS and Android mobile devices, Rogers and Shaw set-tops, and the Xbox 360.
Shomi has not announced how many subs have signed on so far, but it is competing with Netflix, which launched service in Canada in 2010. Bell Media, meanwhile, offers CraveTV, a $4 per month OTT service distributed by several partners, including Eastlink, TELUS Optik TV, Bell Fibe TV, Bell Satellite TV, Bell Aliant FibreOP TV, Access Communications, Northwestel, Cable Cable, Nexicom, Hay Communications, Mitchell Seaforth Cable TV, Tuckersmith Communications, and Wightman Telecom subscribers.
“The beta has been a huge success and we’re excited to now bring it to all Canadians. We’ve taken the time to work out the kinks so members can enjoy a great user interface and viewing experience,” David Asch, shomi’s recently named SVP and GM, said in a statement. “We know more Canadians want the bleary-eyed but oh-so-satisfying experience of an epic entertainment binge, and that they want the freedom to choose how they access the service. This exciting next step gives them that opportunity and we’re excited to share shomi with everyone.”